As storms once again battered the state of Alabama over Christmas, Republican Gov. Robert Bentley moved to divert funding from the 2010 BP oil spill recovery effort to finance the renovation of a second Governor’s mansion on the Gulf Coast.Yet that beachside mansion, which Alabama governors beginning with famed segregationist George Wallace have enjoyed, was not damaged by the BP oil spill. It was damaged more than two decades earlier by Hurricane Danny, and has sat empty ever since.
While Alabama’s oyster industry and coastal communities continue to suffer from the effects of the massive Deepwater Horizon oil well blowout, the repairs to the governors’ mansion are estimated to cost between $1.5 million and $1.8 million. Though Bentley says he will stay there only “on occasion,” the administration said the property would be “primarily” used to wine and dine corporate executives considering the state for investment. (emphasis mine)